Natasha Mann
Traditional Moroccan Painting On Wood (Zouaq)
Radcliffe Trust
Summer | 2012

Natasha is an artist specialising in traditional Moroccan painting on wood. This art form, known as Zouaq, can traditionally be found painted onto ceilings, doors and furniture in Morocco. In 2007 she undertook an apprenticeship in Zouaq painting with a Master in Fes, Morocco. Since returning to England she has continued to research and paint Zouaq art and she frequently travels to Morocco. She creates Islamic geometric and floral designs which she paints using hand ground pigments with egg tempera and 24 carat gold leaf.

Natasha received a QEST scholarship to study an MA in Islamic and Traditional Arts at the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts, London. During the course she was taught how to make natural pigments as well as how to create Islamic geometric patterns with just a compass. Knowledge on how to create geometric designs by hand and work with natural pigments is dying out in Morocco and the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts is one of the only places in the world that still teaches these skills. Studying at PSTA has been a unique experience which taught her not only many new skills and techniques but also gave her a greater appreciation of Zouaq art.

Natasha holds a degree in Arabic and French from Cambridge University and an MA from the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts. She was awarded the Barakat Prize for outstanding contribution to Islamic Art by HRH Prince Charles in 2014. She is now based in London where she undertakes commissions for paintings and interiors. She also teaches evening classes in Moroccan Zouaq painting at the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts.


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